Hot off the BD brainpan this morning:
Excerpt near the bottom:
"Every cop saw that video," O'Connor said. "One big difference is that now, on the street, there is no fear. Even in the '90s, with all the killing, the gangs feared the police. When we'd show up, they'd run. But now? Now they don't run. Now, there is no fear."
Until recently, the ability of cops, to freely delete an occasional low-life extreme street scum, has been necessary to preserve polite society. Now, (BodyCams, Dashcams, BLM, big settlement$$$) nobody is safe....
chicagotribune | Manpower shortages combined with too much overtime lead to exhaustion. And loss of morale from the mayor's botched handling of the Laquan McDonald fiasco have wreaked havoc with command, with street stops down markedly. Yet taxpayers don't have a true picture of how thin that thin blue line has become.
All these problems have deep roots. Daley was at war with his Police Department and demanded a thorough house cleaning. There was a purge of district commanders and other leaders under former police Superintendent Jody Weis, and that created havoc throughout the command structure.
Earlier, the large gang crimes units — south, west and north — which provided valuable human intelligence and interaction with the gangs, were disbanded and remade.
A common theme recently is that people in the most violent neighborhoods don't cooperate with police, but the fact is they won't talk to cops they don't know. And they won't talk with others listening.
The gang members, and their families, knew officers in the old gang crimes units.
"They'd catch a two-time loser with a gun, put the cuffs on, and he'd know what to do," said Bob Angone, who spent 30 years as a street cop, as a tactical lieutenant and commander of the hostage barricade team.
"That loser will say, I know who shot victim so-and-so. They'll give you information, but they'll only tell the police they trust, the specialists, because they know they'll get their break in court, that the specialists would keep your word. That's how it's done. And the city lost a lot when we lost the gang crimes units."
There is another thing to consider about the differences between August 1991 and now. It isn't quantifiable; it won't fit on a mayoral white paper, there are no numbers to it.
But it was reported, with a video, by Tribune journalists Megan Crepeau and Erin Hooley a few days ago under the headline: "Heckling and gunfire as police investigate shooting: 'We're just playing.'"
Police were investigating reports of a shooting in bloody Englewood when about 10 young men confronted them, harassed them, mocked them on the street, hurling epithets, angry, defiant.